A Public News Service reporter was arrested Tuesday at the West Virginia State Capitol after seeking out Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price to ask him questions about the new health care bill that was recently passed by the House.
Price and special counsel to the president Kellyanne Conway were visiting the Capitol building when Dan Heyman said he asked Price if the new health care bill considers domestic violence a preexisting condition, according to ABC 2 News.
Heyman said he waited for Price to enter the building before he bypassed those with him, pointed his phone at Price and began asking several health care questions.
Heyman said Capitol Police "decided I was just too persistent in asking this question and trying to do my job and so they arrested me," The Hill noted.
"I asked if I was under arrest, and they said yes. And I said, 'If I’m under arrest, how come I haven’t had my Miranda rights read to me?'" he said, according to Metro News. "They said, 'Well, we’re not asking you any questions right now.'"
According to police, Heyman was "aggressively breaching the secret service agents to the point where the agents were forced to remove him a couple of times from the area walking up the hallway in the main building of the Capitol. The defendant was causing a disturbance at Ms. Conway and Secretary Price."
Heyman said this was the first time something like this has happened to him.
"First time I’ve ever been arrested for asking a question. First time I’ve ever heard of someone getting arrested for asking a question," he said, according to The Hill.
Heyman said he didn’t receive a single warning.
"No police officer told me ‘you’re in the wrong place,’" he added.
"It’s dreadful. This is my job, this is what I’m supposed to do. I’m supposed to find out if someone is going to be affected by this health care law…I think it is a question that deserves to be answered," Heyman said.
Heyman paid a $5,000 bail to be released from custody. He’s been charged with willful disruption of governmental processes, which is a misdemeanor offense.
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